Date
17 December 2017
Wang Qishan is a strategist who sees the situation from a holistic point of view, says anti-corruption expert Li Yongzhong. Photo: AFP
Wang Qishan is a strategist who sees the situation from a holistic point of view, says anti-corruption expert Li Yongzhong. Photo: AFP

Expert traces SOE corruption to unscientific power structures

There is widespread corruption among state-owned enterprises (SOEs) as there is little supervision of their operations due to their unscientific power structures, Legal Weekly reported Wednesday, citing institutional anti-corruption expert Li Yongzhong.

The way these giant companies appoint personnel and the fact that SOE officials are controlling massive resources in the country also aggravate the situation, he said.

Li believes the main battlefield of the anti-graft campaign should be in government institutions, and not SOEs.

State firms can only be the second battlefield, he said, as these enterprises and government institutions have different tasks. SOEs have to “prosper”, while public institutions have to be “clean” and they are the very place where power has to be balanced, he said.

The central government is apparently focusing its war against corruption on state corporations as evidenced by the series of top-level sackings in these establishments. 

In September 2013, Jiang Jiemin, former chairman of PetroChina Co. Ltd. (00857.HK), was sacked as head of the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission (SASAC) of the State Council amid a corruption investigation.

This year, about a dozen top SOE officials have been removed from their posts amid investigations into corruption cases. Song Lin, former chairman of China Resources Holdings, was sacked last month, and Zhu Changlin, head of the northern China operations of the State Grid Corporation of China, was held for questioning last week.

Li said merging the three “old groups”, referring to the party committee, labor union and workers congress, with the three “new groups” of shareholders, board of directors and board of supervisors, will help to improve the situation, as there can be coordination between representatives of national interest, collective interest and labor’s interest, the report said.

He also said Wang Qishan, the secretary of the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, is a real strategist as he could see the situation from a holistic point of view and knows how to calculate his moves.

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